By Judy La Russa,

In Nov. 2016, Measure I—a $56.9 million general obligation bond program passed providing funds to be used to upgrade, modernize, and renovate high schools throughout the District. The main project plans include an Aquatic Swim Center for Foothill High School in Palo Cedro.

Construction broke ground this year with the Swim Center estimated for completion in Spring of 2020, in time for the Fall high school swim season.

The 12-lane competition, short course pool will have significant longevity with its stainless-steel walls, concrete floor, and multi-lining system. These modern features and amenities will make it a great place for local swimmers to train and compete.

The project is being constructed next to existing locker rooms, but project plans include an equipment room for maintenance, team office and storage room for team equipment.

Foothill High School Swim Head Coach Jessica Rowe, who is an FHS alumnus, will be coaching her eighth year this 2019/20 season and cannot be happier with the new project. While attending FHS, Rowe swam all four years and continued at Shasta College for two years and coached at Redding Swim Team for nine years.

Foothill High swim athletes have been using the Enterprise High School pool for their “home practices and meets.”  The team would have to wait till the EHS athletes finished practice before they could begin their daily routine from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. “With the 5:00-6:30 practice time every day, made it a very hard time for a lot of families. That’s dinner time, homework time, family time,” said Rowe.  She added, “There is no transportation to or from practices or meets within our area. Athletes are required to get themselves to and from practice every day. Location and timing make it very hard for students to be on the team. It takes some serious dedication to commit, but we have an amazing group of athletes and parents.”

Rowe said that she hopes having a pool of their own on the campus will result in a huge growth for the FHS team.  “Once we have our own pool, we can have practice right after school and have access to so many more resources to help the swimmers train/grow/succeed. I seriously cannot wait for it to be done!” said Rowe.